Gastric carcinomas with stromal b7-h3 expression have lower intratumoural cd8+ t cell density

Dita Ulase, Hans Michael Behrens, Sandra Krüger, Sebastian Zeissig, Christoph Röcken

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)
2 Downloads (Pure)


CD8+ T cells are the main effector cells of anti-cancer immune response that can be regulated by various costimulatory and coinhibitory molecules, including members of the B7 family. B7 homolog 3 (B7-H3) appears as a promising marker for immunotherapy; however, its significance in gastric cancer (GC) is unclear yet. We evaluated the spatial distribution of CD8+ T cells in relation to the expression of B7-H3 by double immunohistochemical staining. The level of B7-H3 intensity was scored manually (0-3) and dichotomized into B7-H3-low and B7-H3-high groups. The distribution and density of CD8+ T cells was analysed using whole slide digital imaging. B7-H3 was expressed mainly in the stromal compartment of GC (n = 73, 76% of all cases). Tumours with high expression of B7-H3 showed larger spatial differences of CD8+ T cells (86.4/mm2 in tumour centre vs. 414.9/mm2 in invasive front) when compared to B7-H3-low group (157.7/mm2 vs. 218.7/mm2, respectively) (p < 0.001). This study provides insight into the expression pattern of B7-H3 in GC of Western origin. In GCs with higher level of B7-H3 expression, CD8+ T cells were spatially suppressed in the tumour centre suggesting that B7-H3 might be involved in tumour escape mechanisms from the immune response.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2129
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2 Feb 2021


  • B7-H3
  • CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes
  • Gastric cancer
  • Immune checkpoint
  • Immune evasion
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Tumour escape
  • Tumour microenvironment

Field of Science*

  • 3.1 Basic medicine

Publication Type*

  • 1.1. Scientific article indexed in Web of Science and/or Scopus database


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